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Future Bodies from a Recent Past – Sculpture, Technology, and Bodies

Group show with works by Robert Breer
Museum Brandhorst, Munich
June 2, 2022 - January 13, 2023

Future Bodies from a Recent Past—Sculpture, Technology, and the Body since the 1950s brings to life a hitherto little-noticed phenomenon in art, and more particularly in sculpture: the reciprocal interpenetration of body and technology. With more than 100 works and several large-scale installations by around 60 artists—primarily from Europe, the United States, and Japan—the exhibition focuses on the major technological changes since World War II and their influence on our ideas of the body.

Contemporary art is characterized by an examination of the relationship between the body and technology. Many artworks from recent years reflect how we experience ourselves and our environments in the highly technological and networked present. Yet this relationship can be traced far back into the 20th century. The post-war period was marked by rapid technological change, which has become the pinnacle of ideological instrumentalization. It satisfied the need for novelty as much as the need to overcome the traumas of war. At the same time, technology became a crystallization point for global threats and fears of change, or even loss of control. Within this broad spectrum, ranging from euphoria about the future to critical distancing, sculpture also engaged with new technologies. These served equally as means of emancipation as surveillance and (external) control, and profoundly influenced our understanding of bodies.

Curated by: Patrizia Dander, Chief Curator, with Franziska Linhardt, Research Associate

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